Archive for Tuesday, August 17, 2010

100 years ago: University analyzes bootleg whiskey

August 17, 2010

Advertisement

From the Lawrence Daily World for August 17, 1910:

“A sample of whiskey containing Cannabis Indica, a drug more potent in its effect than opium, has just been analyzed in the laboratory of the university. The sample was furnished by J. G. Sullivan, 604 Illinois street and was purchased a few months ago from a boot-legger on the streets. Mr. Sullivan was suspicious of the liquor the moment he saw its peculiar color and he had the analysis made in an effort to determine exactly what it contained. All the whiskey offered for sale illegally by bootleggers in Lawrence is manufactured from the vilest ingredients.... Lawrence is the best paved city of its size in the state. At the beginning of 1910 more than half a million dollars had been invested in vitrified brick paving in South Lawrence. The university town has three times the amount of street paving per capita as does Denver, the most progressive city of the west.... Dr. Lucy Taylor, 809 Vermont street, suffered a stroke of paralysis about 2 o’clock yesterday morning. Dr. Smith, the family physician, found that the entire right side was completely paralyzed, but hopes that the condition may not prove permanent. Dr. Taylor is a dentist.”

Comments

thuja 4 years, 11 months ago

"A sample of whiskey containing Cannabis Indica, a drug more potent in its effect than opium"

Boy what those old timey folks believed!

Sarah St. John 4 years, 11 months ago

Space issues prevented me from adding more, so here it is. Right after "manufactured from the vilest ingredients" the story went on to say:

... and much of it, like the present sample, contains positively dangerous drugs. Canabis Indica, otherwise known as India Hemp, is the dried flowering top of the female plant of Cannabis Satine Linn, from which the resin has been removed. An alcoholic extract made by steeping the tips and leaves, produces great exhilaration followed by muscular fatigue and temporary depression. The drug when added to whiskey, produced a singular pleasurable excitement throughout the body. Its effects are far more potent than opium, the drinker being subject to the wildest and most fanciful impressions of gratification and satisfaction. The after effects which follow are most depressing, and are accompanied by disagreeable hallucinations. While a comparatively rare drug in America, it is not an expensive one and is frequently unscrupulously used in the cheapest imitations of whiskey to produce in an exaggerated form the intoxicated sensations of the liquor.... The authorities are extremely anxious to land the particular individual who knows enough chemistry to use the drug.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 4 years, 11 months ago

"Dr. Lucy Taylor, 809 Vermont street, suffered a stroke of paralysis about 2 o’clock yesterday morning. Dr. Smith, the family physician, found that the entire right side was completely paralyzed, but hopes that the condition may not prove permanent. Dr. Taylor is a dentist.”"

She is believed to be the first practicing female dentist.

http://home.comcast.net/~thorsdag/LucyHobbsTaylor.html

Sarah St. John 4 years, 11 months ago

Her name jumped right out at me for the same reason. Her old house is in my neighborhood, I believe. I thought it was interesting that the 1910 paper didn't mention her status as a pioneer in dentistry. Also, it sounds like a stroke, doesn't it? Looking ahead at both the link you provided (thanks!) and the wikipedia article (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lucy_Hobbs_Taylor), it does look like I will have sad news to read about her in October.

jjt 4 years, 11 months ago

Somewhere there is the recipe, if KU did an an analysis they will have it. Now how to get it? I only want to know what the proportions were honestly. You know for scholastic purposes only.

Sarah St. John 4 years, 11 months ago

It gave me a chuckle to think of J. G. Sullivan taking this bootleg whiskey in for analysis. Can you imagine? "Here, I bought this illegally, and it doesn't look right! Oh, and I only bought it because I wanted to get it off the streets so it wouldn't harm anybody. Yep."

TheEleventhStephanie 4 years, 11 months ago

These OHT thingies are way more interesting than they used to be. Good work, Sarah!

Sarah St. John 4 years, 11 months ago

Thank you Stephanie XI -- I really appreciate the feedback! :)

Randall Uhrich 4 years, 11 months ago

I would think that the alcohol, if there were much of it, would degrade or neutralize the Cannabis oils in the mixture. This would negate the intended effects. There's been no history of alcohol/cannabis mixtures ever catching on.

Practicality 4 years, 11 months ago

Great Sarah,

Now there is going to be a rash of idiots trying to make this Marijuana Tea.

I do like the OHT's as well. Do you just read the entire newspaper for that day and then pick out the interesting stuff?

Sarah St. John 4 years, 10 months ago

D'oh! I didn't see this comment until just now. Thanks Practicality! I haven't read of anyone being hospitalized for ingesting some sort of alcohol/cannabis concoction in the past month, so let's hope that my little history blurb didn't lead anyone into temptation. :)

I read the microfilms of the three newspapers for that day, but not cover-to-cover. The interesting things sort of jump out at me. The 1910 is the most enjoyable because there's almost always three or four things right on the front page that are good for OHT use. The 1970 one has been hoppin' for the past few months because it was a very eventful spring and summer in Lawrence. 1985 is sometimes a little difficult because ... well, I guess because it was a rather peaceful time in Lawrence! There's almost always something about development, though, and that's interesting to look back at... new Dillons store at Sixth and Lawrence, new development where the old Sallie Mae building eventually was built, etc. But sometimes in 1985 and even sometimes in 1970 I have to resort to the fun advertisements or telling you what movies were running at that time.

Basically, my rule of thumb is, if I find it interesting, maybe someone else will too. (Also, I don't put in tragic deaths from 1970 or 1985. I figure that's not something any family members still in the area need to re-visit.)

Commenting has been disabled for this item.